Quality lawyers for Leasehold Conveyancing in King's Cross

Leasehold conveyancing in King's Cross is more complex than freehold. Your home move will be smoother where you choose a lawyer with a wealth of experience of leasehold conveyancing in King's Cross and next step up in loc. The lawyers we recommend have been approved by your lender so use our search tool to check.

Sample questions relating to King's Cross leasehold conveyancing

I am intending to rent out my leasehold apartment in King's Cross. Conveyancing solicitor who did the purchase is retired - so can't ask him. Is permission from the freeholder required?

A small minority of properties in King's Cross do contain a provision to say that subletting is only permitted with prior consent from the landlord. The landlord is not entitled to unreasonably refuse but, in such cases, they would need to review references. Experience dictates that problems are usually caused by unsatisfactory tenants rather than owner-occupiers and for that reason you can expect the freeholder to take up the references and consider them carefully before granting consent.

Last month I purchased a leasehold property in King's Cross. Do I have any liability for service charges relating to a period prior to completion of my purchase?

Where the service charge has already been demanded from the previous owner and they have not paid you would not usually be personally liable for the arrears. However, your landlord may still be able to take action to forfeit the lease. A critical element of leasehold conveyancing for your conveyancer to be sure to have an up to date clear service charge receipt before completion of your purchase. If you have a mortgage this is likely to be a requirement of your lender.

If you purchase part way through an accounting year you may be liable for charges not yet demanded even if they relate to a period prior to your purchase. In such circumstances your conveyancer would normally arrange for the seller to set aside some money to cover their part of the period (usually called a service charge retention).

I work for a reputable estate agent office in King's Cross where we have witnessed a few flat sales derailed due to short leases. I have received inconsistent advice from local King's Cross conveyancing solicitors. Please can you clarify whether the vendor of a flat can start the lease extension process for the purchaser on completion of the sale?

As long as the seller has owned the lease for at least 2 years it is possible, to serve a Section 42 notice to start the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. The benefit of this is that the buyer need not have to wait 2 years for a lease extension. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment has to be done prior to, or at the same time as completion of the disposal of the property.

An alternative approach is to agree the lease extension with the freeholder either before or after the sale. If you are informally negotiating there are no rules and so you cannot insist on the landlord agreeing to grant an extension or transferring the benefit of an agreement to the buyer.

Can you offer any advice when it comes to choosing a King's Cross conveyancing practice to carry out our lease extension conveyancing?

When appointing a property lawyer for lease extension works (regardless if they are a King's Cross conveyancing firm) it is imperative that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of conveyancing. We recommend that you speak with several firms including non King's Cross conveyancing practices prior to instructing a firm. If the firm is ALEP accredited then that’s a bonus. Some following of questions might be helpful:

  • If the firm is not ALEP accredited then what is the reason?
  • Can they put you in touch with client in King's Cross who can give a testimonial?

  • Can you provide any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in King's Cross with the purpose of speeding up the sale process?

    • Much of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in King's Cross can be bypassed where you get in touch lawyers as soon as your agents start marketing the property and ask them to put together the leasehold documentation which will be required by the purchasers’ solicitors.
    • The majority freeholders or managing agents in King's Cross levy fees for supplying management packs for a leasehold homes. You or your lawyers should discover the actual amount of the charges. The management information can be applied for as soon as you have a buyer, thus accelerating the process. The average time it takes to receive management information is three weeks. It is the most usual cause of delay in leasehold conveyancing in King's Cross.
  • A minority of King's Cross leases require Landlord’s consent to the sale and approval of the buyers. If this applies to your lease, you should place the estate agents on notice to make sure that the purchasers obtain financial (bank) and professional references. The bank reference should make it clear that the buyer is financially capable of paying the annual service charge and the actual amount of the service charge should be quoted in the bank’s letter. You will therefore need to provide your estate agents with the service charge figures so that they can pass this information on to the purchasers or their solicitors.
  • If there is a history of any disputes with your freeholder or managing agents it is very important that these are resolved before the property is put on the market. The purchasers and their solicitors will be reluctant to purchase a flat where there is a current dispute. You may need to swallow your pride and pay any arrears of service charge or resolve the dispute prior to the buyers completing the purchase. It is therefore preferable to have any dispute settled prior to the contract papers being issued to the buyers’ solicitors. You are still duty bound to disclose details of the dispute to the buyers, but it is better to present the dispute as over as opposed to unsettled.
  • You may think that you are aware of the number of years remaining on your lease but it would be advisable verify this by asking your solicitors. A buyer’s conveyancer will be unlikely to recommend their client to proceed with the purchase of a leasehold property the remaining number of years is less than 75 years. In the circumstances it is essential at an early stage that you identify whether the lease term requires a lease extension. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your home on the market for sale.

  • I have attempted and failed to negotiate with my landlord to extend my lease without success. Can the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal adjudicate on such matters? Can you recommend a King's Cross conveyancing firm to help?

    You certainly can. We are happy to put you in touch with a King's Cross conveyancing firm who can help.

    An example of a Lease Extension matter before the tribunal for a King's Cross flat is Flat 89 Trinity Court Grays Inn Road in February 2013. the Tribunal found that the premium to be paid by the tenant on the grant of a new lease, in accordance with section 56 and Schedule 13 to the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 should be £36,229. This case affected 1 flat. The remaining number of years on the lease was 66.8 years.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in King's Cross